How to Dress Baby for Sleep in Summer

How to Dress Babies for Sleep in Summer

3 June 2022 • Words by Karla Pretorius 2 mins

What a difficult job it is to look after another being, keeping them safe, warm, and fed while guessing what they might need during the night? Babies can’t regulate their body temperature as well as we can and can’t tell us what they might need to be a little warmer or cool down.

Our first worry is that our babies are always safe. According to the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP), babies should sleep alone in a crib, in the same room as their parents, on their backs, and without blankets or toys. If not tied to clothes or other items, a pacifier has been determined to be safe.

But then, how do we ensure our baby is dressed appropriately for sleep in the summer?

Your baby should generally sleep in one more layer than you. A sleeveless cotton garment and a swaddle or sleep sack would typically be sufficient for warmer weather. Some parents constantly check the room’s temperature and have various suggestions of the ideal room temperature that they follow. There is no consensus on what is ideal for all infants.

We suggest not being too focused on the temperature as babies’ preferences also differ, just like ours. It might be easier and less stressful to check your baby’s temperature by gently touching their tummy or back. If it is slightly warm, they are dressed appropriately. Parents of young infants are usually up throughout the night to check up on their child or wake with any movements. You could also check your baby’s temperature during these times and ensure they are not losing body heat too quickly or, probably more common, feeling a little too warm during the night. 

According to Coleman-Phox and Odouli (2008), using a fan is associated with a reduced risk of sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS). This is also an option for parents who cannot maintain a cooler temperature in warmer environments during the summer months.

If you stick with the basics and ensure consistency, you might be able also to get more sleep once your child is in bed, with a comfortable sleeveless garment by themselves in a cot next to you. A final note would include a nighttime routine that is calming and consistent. Doing a short night meditation or bedtime story from Moshi could help instill these healthy sleep habits and routines. Click here to listen to a calming lullaby for your baby..and you!

Goodnight, sleep “not too tight” to your baby! 

Karla Pretorius

A registered counselor with a MA in Psychology. Co-founder: AIMS Global & Leadership at: Augmental